CosmEthics brings transparency to cosmetics in China
Cosmethics has released an app that reveals the secrets of cosmetic ingredients to consumers in China. By scanning the product’s barcode or doing a product search in the app’s database, the app helps consumers find out information about what is really in the cosmetic product.
“There is still very little regulation in China. The need for consumers to understand what is in a product is even bigger there than it is in the EU. The first product that we took off a store shelf in China contained an ingredient that is banned in the EU,” says Katariina Rantanen, the founder of CosmEthics.
“Skin-lightening products are a big hit and trend in Asia, and if one really takes that road, attention really must be paid to raw materials,” she stresses.
The product’s soft launch in mainland China and Hong Kong has been positively received: users have given the new service a rating of 5/5 in app stores.
In addition to the Chinese launch, CosmEthics has also raised 300 000 euros from private investors in its second round of funding. Thanks to new investors Mårten Mickos and Leena Niemistö, a licencing model and the medical side of the app’s data will be developed. The app has amassed a total of 650 000 euros in funding.
CosmEthics is also investing in the long term by introducing the app to department stores for professional use. In Finland, the Sokos chain of department stores is already a customer, and the same co-operation model is being built in the US.
“This is a marathon, not a sprint,” Rantanen sums up.
Text: Sara Vihavainen